“Some people come to a craft fair and it’s a very nice event,” said Wade Wilson, who will deliver historical presentations throughout the festival this weekend. “But ... the reason we [also focus on the church’s history is] because a lot of people ask questions — ‘Well, what is this place?’ We feel it is sacred ground.
“There’s just been a lot of occurrences there that will move people and we’re there to share that. ... So that is a way when people do come on our grounds, they can come in and listen to the stories that we have of the facility and the place and the campground and just the whole place, there. So I think it’s a good opportunity for that. It’s a good way that we’re able to share that with them.”
To be held Saturday from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. and Sunday from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m., the 35th annual Pine Log Arts & Crafts Fair will feature arts and crafts vendors — situated on cabin porches and beneath the tabernacle and outdoor tents — entertainment, barbecue, desserts and a 9 a.m. Community Sunday Service.
“We basically have probably about over 60 different exhibitors that we have invited and have decided to come this year,” said Amy Powell, a member of Pine Long UMC’s Communications Committee. “We have anything ranging from metal artwork to concrete to lithographs and [photography] and handicrafts. There’s always something edible among the vendors and we have ... our famous north Georgia pit barbecue.
“... We have [vendors] that come from all over Georgia, every different direction of the state. And then, because we’re in north Georgia, we have North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee, Alabama vendors. I’m not sure if we have anyone from Florida this year, but we have historically.”
Led by Wilson, the fair’s historic presentations will be conducted Saturday and Sunday at 11 a.m., and 1 and 3 p.m., providing participants valuable insight about Pine Log UMC.
“We go into the sanctuary and we’ll do probably a 30- to 45-minute little talk on basically the history of the church, some of the significant happenings that occurred there, some of the history of the grounds as far as the church building, the tabernacle, the campground area and the cemetery,” Wilson said. “... We have a few smaller stories that we’ll be discussing, but the one that usually brings attention to a lot of the people is our story about the earthquake.
“This is the story where [on] Aug. 31, 1886, the Rev. J.N. Sullivan was preaching the last camp meeting service that year and he prayed this prayer at the end of it — he said, ‘Lord, if it takes it to enter the hearts of these people, shake the ground on which this building stands.’ As soon as he completed his prayer, the grounds began to shake and it was due to the violent earthquake that shook Charleston, S.C., that same day and the effects were felt in Pine Log. It just so happened to be right after Rev. Sullivan had prayed this prayer. The [story] is well-known. ... [There have] been sermons preached in different areas and they’ll reference that occurrence at Pine Log. So it’s definitely unique.”
While children 12 and younger will be admitted at no cost to the fair, adults will be charged $3. For more information about the event, call 770-607-5350 or 770-608-1285 or visit www.pinelogumc.com.